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Medieval English given name from Old French Josse, name of a seventh century saint Latinized as Jodocus, from Breton Iodoc, diminutive of iudh ‎(lord).[1]


Proper noun[edit]


  1. An English and Irish patronymic surname​.
  2. A female given name, associated by folk etymology with joy and rejoice.

Related terms[edit]


  • 1860 Mrs Henry Wood (Ellen Wood): East Lynne:
    "It's a curious name," remarked Captain Levison. "Joyce - Joyce! I never heard such a name. Is it a Christian name or a surname?"
    "She was baptised Joyce. It is not so very uncommon. Her name is Joyce Hallijohn. She has been with us several years."
  • 1959 Anne Sexton: The Double Image:
    You call me mother, and I remember my mother again,
    somewhere in greater Boston, dying.
    I remember we named you Joyce
    so we could call you Joy.



  1. ^ Patrick Hanks and Flavia Hodges: A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford University Press 1988.

External links[edit]